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Donnie Fritts in Session

Bob hosts a session from Donnie Fritts.

The legendary Donnie Fritts in session

One of the architects of the famed Muscle Shoals Sound, songwriter Fritts also enjoyed success as a longtime associate of Kris Kristofferson. A native of Florence, Alabama, as a teen he played drums with local acts like the Satellites and Hollis Dixon. By the late '50s he was writing and performing with the likes of Arthur Alexander, Dan Penn, and Spooner Oldham, all of them joining forces to forge the unique fusion of Southern soul, pop, country, and R&B immediately recognizable as the Muscle Shoals Sound. Fritts' early songs were recorded by performers as diverse as Percy Sledge, Dusty Springfield, the Box Tops.

By the late '60s he was employed as a Nashville staff writer, working alongside fellow up-and-comer Kristofferson. Beginning in 1970, Fritts was Kristofferson's touring keyboardist, and they appeared together in films including Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia, and A Star Is Born. In 1974 Fritts issued a debut solo LP, Prone to Lean; however, no more solo material was forthcoming until 1997's Everybody's Got a Song, which included new renditions of his classics "We Had It All" and "A Damn Good Country Song," recorded with guests including Waylon Jennings, Willie Nelson, John Prine, Lucinda Williams, Delbert McClinton.

Fritts didn't record again under his own name for another half dozen years. He had become friendly with producer and label and studio owner John Paul White (formerly of the Civil Wars), who asked him to play the premiere of the Muscle Shoals documentary. While visiting one day, White heard Fritts play songs on his well-used Wurlitzer that were favourites, not necessarily his own. Released by White's Single Lock Records, Oh My Goodness was issued in October of 2015.

57 minutes

Last on

Thu 2 Jun 2016 19:00

Music Played

  • Johnny Cash

    One Piece At A Time

    • Ultimate Country (Various Artists).
    • Telstar.
  • Will Hoge

    Growing Up Around Here

    • Small Town Dreams.
    • Thirty Tigers (Promo).
    • 1.
  • Aubrie Sellers

    Something Special

    • New City Blues.
    • Thirty Tigers.
    • 1.
  • Rosanne Cash

    Lovin' Him Was Easier (Than Anything I'll Ever Do Again)

    • The Pilgrim: A Celebration Of Kris Kristofferson.
    • American Roots.
    • 1.
  • Donnie Fritts

    Eroll Flynn (Radio 2 Session 2nd June 2016)

  • Donnie Fritts

    Temporarily Forever Mine

    • Oh My Goodness.
    • Single Lock.
  • Civil Wars

    20 Years

    • Barton Hollow.
    • Sensibility.
    • 1.
  • Colvin & Earle

    Happy & Free

    • Colvin & Earle.
    • Concord.
  • Charlie Worsham

    Someone Like Me

    • Rubberband.
    • Warner Brothers.
    • 7.
  • Keith Urban

    Somebody Like You

    • Golden Road.
    • Capitol.
    • 001.